Author Interview: Princess Alethea Swims with the Mermaids

Alethea Kontis, author of Enchanted

This surprised me. I was nervous. I wanted to conduct the best possible interview ever because I was interviewing the one and only Alethea Kontis. Yes, the New York Times Bestselling author, the multi-published author of the AlphaOops! series, the author of the newly released Enchanted, which is getting RAVE reviews, not surprisingly–and she’s also the founder of the Waterworld Mermaids (and my roomie at the 2012 WRW-DC Retreat). So yes, I was nervous! But if you know Alethea, you know I shouldn’t have been nervous one darn bit. Mainly because she wouldn’t allow it. A charming young woman with an infectious fun-loving personality, and a huge amount of talent, energy and love for writing and for being the best writer she can be, Alethea is fabulous and likely the only Princess I’ll ever know:)…and that’s just fine with me.

It was my pleasure to spend a few minutes swimming in her pond. So, without further adieu, here’s my interview with Alethea Kontis.

Denny said: Let’s get to the facts right up front. What’s your full author name, website, your latest release, the WIP that is keeping you up at night, your agent, your publisher, how long have you been writing…your successes? Yes, I want the mini bio right here, right now!

Alethea said: My name is Alethea Kontis,, Latest release(s): Enchanted, The Wonderland Alphabet, and my current WIP is called Saturday (sequel to Enchanted). My agent is Deborah Warren (East West Literary Agency).

I have been writing since I was eight years old. I was published by 30 and hit the New York Times bestseller list at 31. I’ve published picture books, short stories, poetry, essays, romance encyclopedias, and now (finally!) a novel. I’ve edited a major anthology, and I have friends in all genres, all over the world. I am a very lucky girl.

Denny said: What’s the best kept secret about your writing process?

Alethea said: Brownies. (The elves, not the dessert. Or the Girl Scouts.) For a bit of milk and honey, I get a lot of work done.

Denny said: What character have you written or are writing that keeps you up at night – just one, please:)?

Alethea said: My most recent obsession was/is a young girl named Ashes on the Wind — the princess formerly known as “Snow White.” I wrote her origin tale as a short story–“The Unicorn Hunter”–that was included in John Skipp’s Demons anthology last year. (You can still read it for free by clicking here. She also appears as a character in the sequel to Enchanted. But it’s not time for me to tell the rest of her story just yet…but I promise you, what a story it will be.

Denny said: What fictional character (book, film, television, comics) has had the greatest influence on your writing style and why?

Alethea said: My writing has been most influenced by the King of Hearts from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Begin at the beginning,” the King said gravely, “and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” The rhyming and the nonsense and the impossible things before breakfast are all just part and parcel.

Denny said: What book/author is the current “hot read” on your bookshelf?

Alethea said: Right now on my TBR pile are Wuftoom by Mary G. Thompson, The Taker and The Reckoning by Alma Katsu, and Thieftaker by D. B. Jackson

Denny said: What’s your favorite drink on a beautiful, not too hot, not too cold, spring evening – and who (fictional or not, friend or family, celebrity or historic figure) would be sitting at your side enjoying that drink with you?

Alethea said: Drink: A hot cup of Greek coffee.

Enchanted by Alethea Kontis

Companion: My Greek grandfather Soterios Kontis–refugee, merchant marine, and pirate–who died before I was born.

Denny said: Who’s your favorite author and what would you ask them if you had the chance (or when you had the chance)?

Alethea said: I’ve sat here for far too long trying to think of a favorite author. I’ve come up with no less than twenty-seven names. But I don’t have questions. The sentiment I would say to all of them remains the same: “Thank you.”

Denny said: Last question…what question have you been dying to answer but no one has ever asked?

Alethea said: Hey, Alethea, where do your own siblings fall into the Woodcutter family? Which children are they most like?

Then Alethea replied: You know, I was hoping that someone would ask me this question–thank you so much for being that person! My eldest sister Cherie is definitely Monday, fair of face. She was once runner-up in the Miss Vermont pageant. Peter has a lot of my brother West at heart–quiet, romantic, and magic with a knife. (Peter isn’t a fourth-degree black belt in Tae Kwan Do…but there have to be some differences.) I am all of the sisters in some ways, of course, in order to breathe life into them…but I’m most like Sunday. Ironically, my youngest sister Soteria is most like Saturday–strong and soft-hearted, confident and insecure all at the same time.

I would love to make a personality quiz…which Woodcutter sibling are you most like?

Thank you Alethea!

Now visitors, it’s your turn!  Alethea will be stopping by to answer questions and to say hi! We also are offering a book giveaway today to one lucky commenter–a signed copy of Alethea’s new book, Enchanted.  So jump in the pond, and enjoy. 

28 thoughts on “Author Interview: Princess Alethea Swims with the Mermaids

  1. Good morning, ladies. Way to start the day! I’m so proud of the both of you and honored to call you friend. Princess Alethea, someday I would like to try some of this Greek coffee. I was wondering what would be the first two questions on your Woodcutter personality quiz?

    And congratulations on the release of your novel, Enchanted!

    1. One day, I would LOVE to make a “Which Woodcutter Sibling Are You?” Quiz. Let’s see…I’d ask what your favorite weapon was (pen, book, knife, ax, needle) and DEFINITELY your favorite fairy tale. 🙂

  2. Alethea,
    As I was privileged to hear you speak about this Greek grandfather, I’m wondering when you will write him as a character. He sounds so fascinating!
    I suppose as a mermaid I have to take my name out of the running for the free book. *sigh*
    I can’t believe you sold out so very quickly at the book signing. Yes, yes, I guess I can see why. 🙂
    Next time I see you, you need to sign my copy!
    Good luck to you with ENCHANTED. I’m sure you’ll hit the New York Times Bestseller list again. As only a princess should…

  3. From your lips to the gods ears! (I SURE HOPE YHEY’RE LISTENING THIS TIME.)

    You know, Thursday is married to the Pirate King. Now that you mention it, I believe he’s going to be a bit Dread Pirate Roberts…and a bit Soterios Kontis. 🙂

  4. I’m so freaking excited to read this, Princess! You should totally make a Woodcutter quiz – so fun!

    Great interview, Denny and Alethea. Good luck – not that you’ll need it. Enchanted is going to rock everyone’s socks!

    You have to remove me from the book drawing – I pre-ordered my copy of Enchanted from Amazon a couple days ago. Start thinking of a super awesomesauce inscription for moi. 😉

    1. Hmm…must figure out a way to mention luring young men to their deaths and true love in the same inscription… :::thinks:::

  5. haha, Oh man, I haven’t read the book yet (soon, ::fingers crossed::, very soon!), but I already love the idea of the Woodcutter Sibling Personality quiz, haha 🙂 Entirely too fun, especially to this fairy tale nut 😉

    1. I tried one of those Quiz Maker Things once, but I got utterly lost and confused. I’ll need the help of someone who’s considerably less of a technoidiot!

  6. Can’t wait to get my hands on this book! I just wish the shipping worked more quickly for state funds! And just so you know, I have a character (story never finished) who painted picture books of his own fairy tale Woodcutter King. There’s more to it, but my memories are hazy at this moment… So glad you wrote this!

  7. Okay, you’re going to drive me mad with anticipation, Alethea! Ashes on the Wind showing up in Saturday’s story (loved the Unicorn Hunter!!) and now I’ll have to wait to find out Thursday’s story and how she ends up married to a pirate king?

      There are lots of fun cameos in the beginning of Saturday’s book…if the publisher lets me keep them in… *sigh* Maybe I’ll sell a million copies and they’ll let me do whatever I want!! xox

  8. What a gorgeous cover, and the premise sounds awesome, too!

    BTW, I’m the same way when it comes to choosing a favorite author. It’s like asking me to pick my favorite child. Can’t. Be. Done.

  9. What a wonderful interview! And I really want to hear more about your grandfather, Alethea : )
    I’ve heard great things about ENCHANTED. May it bring you much success!

    1. Thank you, Jen!
      Yes, I love hearing stories about my Papou. My father has a collection of stuff somewhere — all the things Soterios sent him while he was sailing around the world in the merchant marines.

  10. HI!!! Princess Alethea!!! Im a pre-teen and when I read your interview you sounded so fun and im sure you book is amazing!The cover is so pretty and I would love it if i won this book!!!!!

  11. Great job on the interview, Denny and Alethea. It’s fun learning more about both of you. And though fairy tales are not my usual pick for my TBR list, I’ll take Diana’s advice. I’m ready to be enchanted by Enchanted! And you SO have to write about your grandfather, Alethea. XO

  12. Thank you both for a fabulous interview! Princess Alethea you are fabulous, and I can’t wait to get my greedy little hands on this treasure! I totally think you should do a Woodcutter’s Personality Quiz to accompany all of your fairy stories, you could make it fun and incorporate other things, almost like a companion… hmmm…

    I wish you lots of fairy dust and unbridled success with your upcoming book tour! Maybe you could tell us where we can meet Princess Alethea in person and get a signed copy of Enchanted?

  13. Yay, Alethea! I love this interview, I love your novel, and I love you!

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